Most American children grow up believing in Santa Claus. How parents choose to handle the subject of Santa is ultimately an issue to be agreed upon by both individuals. However, this subject can get tricky when parents are contemplating divorce or have already separated. Unfortunately, some former romantic partners use Santa Claus as a power play over their co-parent. Others simply disagree on how the subject should be handled. In either event, children risk getting blindsided by one parent’s approach over the other if the issue is not properly considered.

Nowadays, when parents divorce and retain some kind of joint custody, they are either compelled or otherwise encouraged to construct parenting plans. These plans may outline visitation and certain financial considerations. But they may also detail how children will be raised in regards to contentious issues. For example, some parenting plans require each parent’s permission before a child gets more than a three inch haircut or receives a piercing.

Your parenting plan may be an excellent resource for settling the issue of Santa Claus. Chances are that you will not need the help of your attorneys or a mediator to reach consensus on this issue, but if you do there is no shame in that whatsoever. What is important is that you and your co-parent come to some sort of agreement and include it in your parenting plan so that you may hold each other accountable if anyone deviates from the agreement. Sensitive issues like Santa Claus certainly have a place in parenting plans. If you need yours revised after having a Santa Claus discussion, please contact your attorney. 

Source: Wonder Woman, “Let your child believe in Santa,” Jane Gopalakrishnan, Dec. 2, 2013